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Balochistan witnesses steep decline in bird populations | Health

QUETTA: There has been a steep decline in bird populations in Balochistan, said conservator of forests and wildlife Balochistan Sharifuddin on Wednesday.

The official confirmed that there has been a decline in the overall population of sparrows among other birds in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan. The revelation comes just a day after bird lovers marked the World Sparrow Day on Tuesday (March 20).

“Even crow, which was a common bird, has decreased in number,” he remarked. “There are no exact figures but it is correct the bird populations have been affected.”

Moreover, a study noted that certain bird populations have been reduced by at least 80 percent since 1990. The research, which was based on Germany and Europe, found that lapwings decreased by 80 percent between 1990 to 2013, the number of partridges dropped by 84 percent between 1990 and 2015.

Reasons for decline

The experts in Quetta reasoned that the decline in Pakistan has occurred due to trees being cut in large numbers, environmental crisis and rapid increase in development projects.

On the other hand, Sharifuddin remarked that the bird populations have been affected due to “loss of their natural habitat, climatic changes, drought with increasing hot and low rainfall.” 

The wildlife official shared that the excessive use of fertilisers and pesticides has also affected the grain-eating birds in the province.

According to a report by BirdLife International (2016), the decline has occurred due to a myriad of ‘threatening processes’ including the spread of agriculture and logging and wood harvesting, residential and commercial development, hunting and trapping, livestock and ranching, and climate change.

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